Sudan's transitional military council delays meeting with political parties

Demonstrators salute soldiers during a protest in Khartoum on Wednesday

Demonstrators salute soldiers during a protest in Khartoum on Wednesday

Sudanese protesters gather near the military headquarters in Khartoum as they continue to rally demanding a civilian body to lead the transition to democracy one day after a military council took control of the country, April 12, 2019.

"Only a credible and inclusive political process can meet the aspirations of the Sudanese people and lead to the political and economic reforms the country needs", said European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini in a written statement.

"This entire group is from Bashir's regime".

Speaking on state TV, Awad Ibn Ouf said the army had made a decision to oversee a two-year transitional period followed by elections.

Sudanese forces celebrate on Thursday after officials said the military had forced longtime autocratic President Omar al-Bashir to step down after 30 years in power.

He further announced the suspension of Sudan's 2005 Constitution and the dissolution of the Sudanese presidency, parliament and council of ministers.

This is following an appeal by Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA) which opposes the military move to take over the government.

Surrendering him to face trial would be a good starting point.

Witnesses said the entire area reverberated with the sound of singing.

Ibn Auf, who is under United States sanctions for supporting genocidal militias in the Darfur region, had been under global pressure to establish a civilian transitional government. Those steps were criticised as heavy-handed by rights groups. Ibn Auf named Abdel-Fattah al-Burha the new chief of the council.

Army vehicles carrying troops were seen deploying across the centre of Khartoum from early Thursday.

Defence Minister Awad Mohammed Ibn Auf is being sworn in as head of a new military council that will run the country for two years.

The political committee will meet political parties and foreign diplomats during the course of Friday, state media reported.

Kamal Abdul-Marouf Al-Mahi, chairman of the Joint Staff Command, was sworn in as deputy chairman of the council.

"Ironically, the prospects for democratic transition may be more remote than when Bashir was in power as there's no centre of power with which to negotiate", said Alex de Waal, executive director of the World Peace Foundation at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University.

South Sudanese rebel leader Riek Machar said in Rome he hoped the situation would be handled "peacefully so that the country can be stable".

Charge d'affaires Yasir Abdelsalam told the UN Security Council on Friday that a civilian government would be "formed in collaboration with political forces and stakeholders".

He said the council was also imposing a 10pm (2000 GMT) to 4:00am (0200) GMT curfew.

But the African Union whose opposition to recent coups has cornered the military to hasty retreats appeared less decisive saying Bashir's military ouster, was "not the appropriate response to the challenges facing Sudan and the aspirations of its people".

"We are not greedy for power", he said.

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